EPCOT is one of Walt Disney World’s most versatile theme parks. In fact, it really represents many worlds within a world. And there are so many possibilities to dream of here that the sky’s not even the limit. Neither are the deep depths of the sea, as you will quickly learn with the vast ocean of opportunities awaiting your eager exploration here. Longtime fans of The Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion know this fact well, along with several others. Here are eight other “fin-tastic” facts to know about The Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion.
8. A Fishy History
Long before Disney-Pixar’s Finding Nemo franchise made a splash, this aquatic marvel was known as the Living Seas. A regally riparian-themed pavilion over in EPCOT, this was where Guests could delight in a majestic aquarium tank of epic proportions, laden with living coral reefs teaming with marine creatures and other watery wonders. It was even known for being the world’s largest saltwater tank for a time.
The Living Seas opened back in 1986, housing a former attraction that took Guests on a Hydrolator-powered adventure, down to the aquarium’s SeaBase level—what was then called “SeaBase Alpha.” From there, visitors of all ages could explore myriad maritime exhibits and even ride about through the middle of the tank via special “SeaCabs.” During the mid-2000s, after a massive re-theming, the site was transformed into The Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion, inspired by the popular computer-animated film Finding Nemo.
7. Host to Its Namesake Ride
There are many attractions that make up the Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion, including the very obvious attraction it shares its name with. A gently paced dark ride that welcomes in all ages, here Guests get to climb into their very own “clamobiles” for smooth sailing through colorful coral reefs, underwater caves, and a versatile display of other sea-themed abundances. You’ll even pass several familiar faces along the way, as you join Marlin, Dory, and others on a quest to find Nemo.
6. Talking Turtle
As we previously mentioned, the Seas with Nemo & Friends is just one of the pavilion’s several attractions. And for another very unique experience, presented in a format featuring Finding Nemo characters in which they come face-to-face with you, head for Turtle Talk With Crush. Taking place throughout the day at the pavilion’s onsite Turtle Talk theater, you can be a part of the audience for an interactive experience with the coolest sea turtle dude around. That’s right, for these 15-minute show segments, Crush will speak to the audience directly in real-time, even singling out individual members to converse with! It’s a totally tubular experience you won’t want to pass up.
5. Aquatic Awesomeness
We mentioned how, at one time, the aquarium contained within the Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion was the largest in the world. That was before the opening of the Georgia Aquarium back in 2005. But it’s still an impressive size worth noting, with all of its 5.7 million gallons of brackish water, serving as home to well over 2,000 aquatic creatures.
Among the versatile array of sea life to see are sharks, dolphins, green sea turtles, seahorses, stingrays, eels, and a seemingly endless count of diverse fish types, including the ever-popular clownfish! The aquarium also plays temporal host to rescued manatees, who are tended to, cared for, and then eventually released back into their natural habitats.
4. Sea-Faring Scavenger Hunt
Add some more Nemo-themed fun into your aquatic explorations of SeaBase with an optional scavenger hunt opportunity. Just pick up a complimentary booklet when exiting the Seas with Nemo & Friends ride, just prior to heading for SeaBase. Then help Dory find her friends by locating clues, collecting stickers, and uncovering fun fishy facts and trivia as you go.
3. Dining Under the Sea
Believe it or not, you can even enjoy a phenomenal table-service dining experience while on location here as well! That’s right, the famed Coral Reef Restaurant of legend is right onsite, surrounded by stunning panoramic windows all throughout, treating Guests to breathtaking underwater views of a plethora of different sea creatures. Some even come right up to the glass to look in on you! What’s more, to be so up close and personal to the stunning living coral reefs in addition to all this cultivates a one-of-a-kind opportunity you can’t find at most other restaurants.
2. Features a VIP Room
Did you know that there’s even a special backstage VIP room on location at the Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion? Used primarily for the purpose of hosting private events, like weddings and even conventions, the esoteric dwelling is presented as a curved room laden with wood-paneled walls on all sides except for one that’s studded with windows looking out directly into the aquarium. The private space also features an acrylic glass see-through piano.
1. Behind-the-Scenes Extras
While ongoing phased re-openings continue to take place within Walt Disney World Resort, there are several exceptional experiences that still remain on hold temporarily. And sadly, three of the most deep-diving delights serving as perfect examples for such can be found right here within the Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion. We are, of course, referring to EPCOT DiveQuest, the EPCOT Seas Adventures Aqua Tour, and Dolphins in Depth.
The first is an experience limited to certified SCUBA divers exclusively, offering up a three-hour excursion that includes 40 minutes under the waters within EPCOT’s own aquarium of massive proportions. Also included in the package is a backstage exclusive look into the inner workings within the pavilion.
The Epcot Seas Aqua Tour is a combination experience spanning two and a half hours in and out of the water, and doesn’t require SCUBA certification. Here Guests get to swim and snorkel in the aquarium learning from the professionals along the way.
Dolphins in Depth is another great opportunity for touring and exploring behind the scenes of the Seas with Nemo & Friends aquarium, and mingling with resident dolphins in particular. You even get the chance to get into waist-high waters for personal interactions.
There’s a fathomless sea of possibilities awaiting you at the Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion. “Just keep swimming” and continue to make waves with these and many other opportunities just waiting for you to deep-dive into.